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St. Kitts’ PM Douglas believes airport construction will be economic stimulus

St. Kitts’ PM Douglas believes airport construction will be economic stimulus

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The latest phase of work at the Argyle International Airport site is expected to lead to national and regional economic development.{{more}}

This is according to regional and international officials, who were on hand to witness the ground breaking ceremony of the terminal building on Sunday, August 7, at Argyle.

Speaking at the ceremony, Caribbean Community (CARICOM) chairman Dr. Denzel Douglas said that in spite of the global financial situation, which has engulfed the world in an economic recession, St. Vincent and the Grenadines must be commended for taking a decision to begin this phase of the airport project at this time.

“…. But the fact that you have decided within a week to start construction here, beginning to pump millions of dollars into the economy; employing thousands, if not hundreds of people, I believe that this is going to be an economic stimulus that St. Vincent and the Grenadines needs at this particular time….”

“I believe to a large extent, that it can only bring enormous benefits for the people of this wonderful country; and it is for that reason that I am sure that even though this project is not yet completed, it will continue to have an improvement on the quality of life of the people of St. Vincent and the Grenadines.”

Douglas, who is Prime Minister of St. Kitts and Nevis, said that an international airport here would also have a far-reaching regional impact.

“…This significant piece of infrastructure that you are constructing here will not only assist in the sustainable development of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, but will also contribute to the economic development and economic union of the OECS (Organization of Eastern Caribbean States) and the Caricom Single Market and Economy of the entire Caribbean region.”

“So, on behalf of CARICOM, I want to commend the planning, the project implementors for taking the decision to start this phase of this project at this particular time.”

Also applauding the commencement of the terminal building construction was H.E. Weber Shih, Ambassador of the Republic of China on Taiwan, who highlighted the importance of an international airport, especially for island nations.

“Without an international airport people cannot cross the border and go far. Without an international airport, returning home is always an expected, but painful journey. Without an international airport, the tourism industry could never prosper.”

“Today the Honorable Prime Minister Denzel Douglas is a most honorable guest of honour to tell us the importance of an international airport to a nation’s development and how it has already made his country different.”

The Ambassador went on to reiterate Taiwan’s commitment to St. Vincent and the Grenadines, as the two countries observe 30 years of diplomatic relations.

He stated that a number of projects spearheaded by Taiwan, namely the construction of the Rabacca Bridge, the national public library and the learning resource centres; and now its involvement in the International Airport project is expected to benefit many generations of Vincentians for years to come.

“More importantly, the terminal building is not only a vital part of this project, but also an elegant ship that will keep the flag flying high,” Shih added.

Both Shih and Douglas called on Vincentians to fully support the construction of the Argyle International Airport, with Douglas promising to return for the opening of the completed airport as long as he is able.

“We are here with you. You can depend on me to be with you thick and thin, through difficult times and good times.”

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